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Finding accommodation for the season

  /  A BACKPACKERS GUIDE   /  Finding accommodation for the season

Finding accommodation for the season

Staff Housing

All Whistler Blackcomb employees are eligible for staff housing. However, staff accommodation is changing over the next few seasons. It’s no longer a guarantee for first-year staff and the number of people per unit will increase to help get more people beds. Rooms that were formerly single rooms at Glacier will now be double rooms. The majority of rooms are bunk beds. Staff housing is a very attractive option, given that rents in Whistler have increased significantly since Airbnb started to take hold. Glacier Park is located on Blackcomb Mountain near Base II. To get there you can take the Gondola up, however, this closes when the lifts stop operating each day. This means a short walk up the hill after each night out. There are 5 buildings with each apartment holding 3 – 4 people. There are also a limited number of single rooms. Glacier Park is the biggest staff housing. Brio is located just on the outskirts of the Whistler village, a 5-minute walk into town via the Valley Trail. There are one and two bedrooms rooms which hold 2 and 4 people respectively. Westside is the newest staff housing. It is located a few kilometres south of Whistler Creekside, which is a 10-minute drive from Whistler Village. This is the most spacious of the staff housing. Creekside is much quieter than Whistler Village and has a grocery store, various retail and rental stores, restaurants and 2 pubs. All units are shared, holding 2 or 4 people. Staff housing starts at around $12 per night for a shared bedroom. Single bedroom starts at around $19 per night The atmosphere in staff housing is very fun. Staff housing is a big dorm and there are parties and other social events going on all the time.  

Renting a Place for a Season

If you are not eligible for staff housing, or you wish not to live in staff housing, there are a number of ways to look for a place. There are hundreds of people who look for a place each season, so get in early – September or October. October is the best time to find a place as most people have not yet arrived for winter but many have left after the summer season. Unfortunately, rents have really risen in Whistler due to many more landlords now renting out on Airbnb. Alternatively, you could come and work for the summer season first (June – September) when the housing is a lot cheaper and secure a 1-year lease through the winter.   Bear in mind that some employers in town are reluctant to take staff who have not yet found a place, given the possibility that the employee might not find anywhere cheap enough to live and have to leave. Rent in Whistler should be around $700 a month per room in a share house but may go up if you are slow getting in.   Options to look for a place in Whistler include Pique News (the local paper which comes out every Thursday); the Whistler Question; and Craigslist. Almost all available rental properties will be up on one of these places. You can also have a look at the noticeboards in Gone Bakery, the Alpine Cafe, the Springs Building, the Core Gym and Meadow Park Gym.  

Where to Live?

There are quite a few little villages around Whistler which include: Whistler Cay, Cay Heights, Nesters, Whistler Village, Tapleys and Brio and Blueberry. These are all close to the village. Living in one of these areas will allow you to avoid having to get a bus pass which is around $65 per month. It also just makes life easier if you can walk everywhere. These areas are the best options for living in Whistler unless you want much more peace and quiet or cheaper rent.   Other areas include Alpine Meadows, Emerald Estates, Creekside, Tamarisk and Westside for which you will need to take the bus. Creekside has buses until about 3am which take around 10 minutes. It is a quieter area with 2 pubs and a few shops. Alpine Meadows and Emerald Estates have buses until about 2am and takes about 15 minutes. There is no real nightlife in these areas. Tamarisk and Westside are around 30 minutes away.  

Practical Living

Being so popular, Whistler is an expensive town and it is very difficult to save money over the season. For those with hospitality jobs receiving tips, you will be better off and possibly able to save a little. Groceries are expensive in Whistler. Squamish is about an hour away on the Greyhound bus. It has a Walmart and a big supermarket. The best way to get there is through a friend with a car. Aricle source https://www.snowseasoncentral.com/winter-jobs-at-whistler-canada  

The Working Holiday Club